This course is the formal training component of an Australian plumbing apprenticeship.

Course name:
CPC32413 Certificate III in Plumbing


Before beginning this course, you must first apply for a job.

This qualification is designed for plumbing apprentices who are employed full time as an apprentice and have a formal contract of training.  The qualification will provide learners with the skills and knowledge required to seek registration with the Victorian Building Authority as a registered plumber.

Master Plumbers offers learners two training plan options in this qualification to meet employer requirements:

  • Mechanical option - five plumbing streams including water, sanitary, gas, roofing and mechanical services
  • Drainage option - five plumbing streams including water, sanitary, gas, roofing and drainage.

Download the full course information here CPC32413 Certificate III

There are no specified prerequisites or entry requirements for learners in this qualification.

However, it is recommended that learners are able to demonstrate language, literacy and numeracy skills equivalent to Level 3 of the Australian Core Skills Framework (ACSF).

All new entrants to the Certificate III in Plumbing will be required to undergo a pre assessment of their language, literacy and numeracy designed to identify their level of ability against the ACSF.

It is recommended that learners hold their Construction Industry Induction card (CPCCOHS1001A Work safely in the construction industry) prior to enrolling in this qualification.

In some cases, applicants have completed a Pre-Apprenticeship or hold a Construction Industry Induction Card (or Basic work-safety white card). Both are recommended, but not a prerequisite.

Master Plumbers (RTO #3937) delivers the qualification CPC32413 Certificate III in Plumbing with Victorian and Commonwealth Government funding.

Course structure
Master Plumbers offers two training-plans: Mechanical services and Drainage services.

The following units of competency are required for the award of this qualification:
Water (mandatory): 24 core units and 5 elective units from the water stream
Sanitary (mandatory): 6 core units and 4 elective units from the sanitary stream
Roofing: 8 core units and 4 elective units from the roofing stream
 Gas services: 12 core units and 5 elective units from the gas services stream

Plus either:
Drainage: 9 core units and 3 elective units from the drainage stream
Mechanical Services: 4 core units and 11 elective units from the mechanical services stream

Stream 1 Water and Stream 2 Sanitary are mandatory for all learners.

To meet industry expectations, and better develop the skills of our apprentices, Master Plumbers delivers five plumbing streams in either the mechanical or drainage training option.

Units of competency achieved in one stream count as credit for the same unit in the core or elective requirements for any other stream.

Delivery arrangements
This qualification incorporates approximately 3.5 years off the job (RTO based) structured training and delivery.  The units required to complete the qualification have been grouped into stages to reflect the skill and knowledge development of apprentice learners over that time. Each stage roughly equates to a year.

Stage 1 Foundation skills

This stage is delivered over 9 x single week blocks of training approximately every 4 weeks.

Stage 2 Plumbing installation skills

This stage is delivered over 8 x single week blocks (drainage stream) or 8 x single week blocks (mechanical services) of training approximately every 4 weeks.

Stage 3 Trade level skills

This stage is delivered over 6 x single week blocks (drainage stream) or 6 x single week blocks (mechanical services) of training approximately every 4 weeks.

Stage 4 Trade level skills (cont.)

This stage is delivered over 2 x single week blocks (drainage stream) or 4 x single week blocks (mechanical services) of training approximately every 4 weeks.

Training delivery methods include;

Practical activities and learning tasks completed in the practical workshop (approximately 50% of the course)
Face to face teacher lead classes (approximately 50% of the course)
Self directed learning activities using learner resource text books, Australian Standards and industry reference materials
The course is delivered at the purpose built facilities at the Plumbing Industry Climate Action Centre (PICAC).

The units CPCPCM2055A Work safely on roofs and HLTAID002 Provide basic emergency life support may be delivered and assessed by CEPUTEC (RTO #4612).

Course duration

Each stage is delivered over a set period of time, or block. Blocks can run for a period of 1 to 8 week, or up to one year.

Mechanical services option
1416 nominal hours or 27 Blocks delivered over approximately 3.5 years (42 months).

Drainage option
1127 nominal hours or 26 Blocks delivered over approximately 3.5 years (42 months).

Block dates (2021)
PH11 (Mechanical Only) PH12 PH13 PH14
PH15 PH16 PH17 PH18
PH19 PH20 PH21 PH22
PH23 PH24 PH25  
NW01 NW02 NW03 NW04

Block dates will be allocated to each student during their induction.
Block dates are subject to change. Please check with Master Plumbers Training team for further details.

Master Plumbers (TOID #3937) delivers the qualification CPC32413 Certificate III in Plumbing with Victorian and Commonwealth Government funding.

Learner fees for government funded courses are calculated in accordance with the State Government of Victoria’s 2021 Standard VET funding contract - Skills First program fee guidelines. Learner fees include tuition fees and materials fees, including text books. This course also may incur an additional cost for tools.

Learners may be eligible for a government funded position in this course.

Are you eligible for a government funded place?

Tuition fee concessions may also be available for eligible learners.

Contact Master Plumbers on 9356 8921 for more information or to confirm your eligibility for a government funded place.

For further information visit the Victorian Skills Gateway to find out more about your eligibility to receive a Victorian Government subsidy.

Fees summary

The following fees and charges below are valid for Year 1 apprenticeship enrolments after 1 January 2021. 

Please note that apprentices will be invoiced for fees on a yearly basis.

If total yearly fees are in excess of $1500 apprentices will be invoiced in two (2) instalments;

first instalment (tuition and materials fees) at the start of the apprenticeship year
second instalment (materials fees) at the midpoint of each year.
Download the Master Plumbers MPD14d Fees and payment schedule – apprenticeship for complete course fee details. Note that learner tuition fees as published are subject to change given individual circumstances at enrolment.   

CPC32413 Certificate III in Plumbing – Year 1 2021
(This training is delivered with Victorian and Commonwealth Government funding)
  Tuition fees Materials fee Other costs Total Year 1 course fee  Gvt contribution
Government funded learner $10,251** $850 Tools $1,875.00 $6,150.00
Fee concession learner $2,051 $850 Tools $1,055.00 $6,970.00
Indigenous learner $2,051 $850 Tools $1,055.00 $6,970.00
Full fee paying learner* NA NA NA NA NA

** Fees may vary slightly depending on actual enrolled units.
* All learners who enroll in CPC32413 are trade apprentices and are eligible for government funding.

Assessment covers:

  • Completion of practical installation tasks, individually or in teams, relevant to plumbing work
  • Oral and/or written questioning related to underpinning knowledge
  • Application of knowledge during practical activities  (e.g. write material lists, plan tasks, develop drawings, read plans)
  • Tests /quizzes to confirm knowledge retention
  • Preparation of SWMS to ensure fundamental WHS requirements

Reasonable adjustments to our assessment methods are available for learners with specific needs.  These will be discussed with a Master Plumbers assessor.

This qualification provides a trade outcome in plumbing. Occupational titles may include: Plumber, Plumber and drainer, Plumber and gasfitter, Gasfitter, Roof plumber, Mechanical services plumber. This qualification is suitable for an Australian Apprenticeship pathway.

Apprentices who successfully complete this qualification will be required to sit the Victorian Building Authority (VBA) external examination if they wish to achieve registration for specific classes of plumbing work.


On successful completion, learners will receive the qualification CPC32413 Certificate III in Plumbing.

Learners who do not complete the full qualification will receive a Statement of Attainment for those unit/s which have been successfully completed. Learners will receive credit for these units where they form part of any other accredited course or training package qualification.

Licensing and registration information

All plumbing work in Victoria must comply with Part 12A of the Building Act 1993 and the Plumbing Regulations 2008.

Part 12A of the Act sets out the legal framework for the registration and licensing of plumbing practitioners, and regulation of plumbing work and other plumbing matters. The Regulations are derived from the Act and set out the requirements that must be complied with.

In accordance with the regulation for registration in Victoria the VBA mandate specific competencies from the Certificate III qualification as a minimum that must be achieved for a plumber to gain registration.

Read the VBA Gazetted list of competency units for plumbing registration


VBA (Journeyman) Exam Dates for 2021



Exams are conducted at the Master Plumbers Phoenix Street workshop.
Apprentices should anticipate that the exams will require three (3) full days. 
VBA exams are only for apprentices that have completed their training with Master Plumbers.
Only apprentices that have satisfactorily completed ALL training and assessment requirements will be eligible to sit the exams.
Apprentices must book by contacting Master Plumbers ten (10) business days prior to nominated exam date. You will receive confirmation if eligible to attend.
These dates are NOT for apprentices wanting to resit their exams. Contact Master Plumbers separately for possible resit dates and associated fees.     
For further information on eligibility and specific requirements contact Cameron Horsey on 9356 7300 or email [email protected]